November 1, 2018
Federal Member for Wide Bay Llew O’Brien has welcomed a new plan to subsidise the wages of apprentices in regional and rural communities.
Mr O’Brien said the Federal Government would inject $60 million into trialling a new wage subsidy plan to encourage employers to hire more apprentices.
“Under the subsidy, eligible employers will be able to receive payments based on the apprentice’s relevant award wage rates,” Mr O’Brien said.
“The subsidies will be provided at 75 per cent of the apprentice’s award wage in the first year, followed by 50 per cent in the second year and 25 per cent in the third year.
“This incentive will help to secure the skills our regional and rural businesses need to remain competitive, and give local students new opportunities at home.”
The trial is expected to subsidise up to 1630 new Australian apprentices.
“Small business plays a vital role in our community, from giving young Australians their first real job to supporting our local charities and sporting organisations,” Mr O’Brien said.
From January 1, 2019, the new subsidy under the Australian Apprenticeships Incentives Program (AAIP), will support eligible new Australian apprentices in areas such as plumbing, mechanical, electrical, painting trades and hairdressing.
“This new incentive will encourage businesses and employers to engage a new apprentice and turbo-charge someone’s future career,” Mr O’Brien said.
“This investment from the Federal Government is another practical step we are taking to help create jobs and opportunities for small businesses and young people in the regions.
“A VET qualification is every bit as important to the economy as a university degree.”
The wage subsidy will complement other incentives currently available through the AAIP and support the engagement of eligible new full-time apprentices at the Certificate III and IV levels in occupations on the National Skills Needs List in regional and rural communities.